"splendid, clear, fire-streaming Symphony in C." Carl Maria von Weber.

Ludwig van Beethoven's first symphony was premiered April 2, 1800 in Vienna in front of a rather puzzled public at the Hofburgtheater in Vienna. This was Beethoven's first big concert, but his genius was already quite well known, as he already hung around in Vienna for a couple of years, being taught by Joseph Haydn and Albrechtsberger and appearing as a Pianist.

According to the lore, the audience was rather surprised / annoyed by the new piece of music, as he just didn't do things right: the first movement started in the wrong key and with a slow introduction, the second movement was not in A minor as Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Joseph Haydn might have done it, the third movement was far to vigourous (especially the Minuet) and the fourth movement resembled a german drinking song.

In later symphonic works Beethoven said "hell" to the sonata form, and you can sense the rebellion already in this marvellous work.

  • I. Adagio molto - Allegro con brio
  • II. Andante cantabile con moto
  • III. Menuetto (Allegro molto e vivace)
  • IV. Adagio - Allegro molto e vivace
Source: notes from class and memory